Tag Archives: jobs

Unemployment rate up a tick to 8.3, July jobs came in at 163K

Better than expected. Look for the focus of the political spin to be on what 8.3 percent means.
Something like:
Romney Camp: Unemployment rate up
Obama Camp: People who gave up looking for work are back looking for work

Also to be debated is whether 163,000 is a large number or a small number.

The commissioner’s statement from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Commissioner’s Statement on the Employment Situation News Release

Advance copies of this statement are made available to the press
under lock-up conditions with the explicit understanding that the
data are embargoed until 8:30 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time.

Statement of

John M. Galvin
Acting Commissioner
Bureau of Labor Statistics

Friday, August 3, 2012

Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 163,000 in July, and the
unemployment rate, at 8.3 percent, was essentially unchanged.
Thus far in 2012, job growth has averaged 151,000 per month,
about the same as the monthly average for 2011 (+153,000). In
July, employment rose in professional and business services, food
services and drinking places, and manufacturing.

Professional and business services employment increased by
49,000 over the month. Computer systems design added 7,000 jobs,
and employment in temporary help services continued to trend up
(+14,000).

In July, food services and drinking places added 29,000
jobs. Employment in this industry has grown by 292,000 over the
past 12 months.

Manufacturing employment rose by 25,000 in July. The motor
vehicles and parts industry had fewer seasonal layoffs than is
typical for July, contributing to a seasonally adjusted
employment increase of 13,000. Employment continued to trend up
in fabricated metal products (+5,000).

Health care employment continued to trend up in July
(+12,000). Over the past 2 months, job growth in health care
averaged 12,000 per month, compared with job gains averaging
28,000 per month during the 12 months ending in May.

Employment in utilities decreased by 8,000 in July,
reflecting a labor-management dispute. (In the establishment
survey, workers who are off payroll for the entire pay period
that includes the 12th of the month are not counted as employed.)

Average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm
payrolls increased by 2 cents in July to $23.52. Over the past
12 months, average hourly earnings have risen by 1.7 percent.
From June 2011 to June 2012, the Consumer Price Index for All
Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased by 1.7 percent.

Turning now to data from the survey of households, the
unemployment rate, at 8.3 percent, and the number of unemployed
persons, at 12.8 million, were essentially unchanged in July.
The labor force participation rate, at 63.7 percent, and the
employment-population ratio, at 58.4 percent, changed little over
the month. These indicators have shown little movement thus far
in 2012.

Among persons who were neither working nor looking for work
in July, 2.5 million were classified as marginally attached to
the labor force, down 256,000 from a year earlier. These
individuals had not looked for work in the 4 weeks prior to the
survey but wanted a job, were available for work, and had looked
for a job within the last 12 months. The number of discouraged
workers, a subset of the marginally attached, was 852,000 in
July, also down from a year earlier.

In summary, payroll employment rose in July (+163,000). The
unemployment rate, at 8.3 percent, was essentially unchanged.

Jobs numbers much lower than expected

March’s employment numbers are out. This is that exciting time of the month when pundits get to pretend they’re economists and business writers get to pretend they’re pundits.
The numbers that came out this morning showing a much lower amount of job creation than expected are going to get everyone hyperventilating about how this will affect the presidential race. We’ll no doubt hear a lot of bluster and see a new round of ads. I don’t think this means the election will swing wildly — it’s just one month of numbers. But unemployment is real. Poverty is real. And while we all get lost in what it means to Mitt or Barack, the statistics are screaming at us to think about the grim reality that this economy is still a long way from bouncing back and a lot of people are not so well off.

Here’s the summary of the report via the BLS:

THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION — MARCH 2012

Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 120,000 in March, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 8.2 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment rose in manufacturing, food services and drinking places, and health care, but was down in retail trade.

Household Survey Data

The number of unemployed persons (12.7 million) and the unemployment rate (8.2 percent) were both little changed in March. (See table A-1.)

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (7.6 percent), adult women (7.4 percent), teenagers (25.0 percent), whites (7.3 percent), blacks (14.0 percent), and Hispanics (10.3 percent) showed little or no change in March. The jobless rate for Asians was 6.2 percent, not seasonally adjusted. (See tables A-1, A-2,and A-3.)

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks and over) was essentially unchanged at 5.3 million in March. These individuals accounted for 42.5 percent of the unemployed. Since April 2010, the number of long-term unemployed has fallen by 1.4 million. (See table A-12.)

The civilian labor force participation rate (63.8 percent) and the employment-population ratio (58.5 percent) were little changed in March.
(See table A-1.)

The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) fell from 8.1 to 7.7 million over the month. These individuals were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job. (See table A-8.)

In March, 2.4 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, essentially unchanged from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime
in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey. (See table A-16.)

Among the marginally attached, there were 865,000 discouraged workers in March, about the same as a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them. The remaining 1.5 million persons marginally attached to the labor force in March had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities. (See table A-16.)

Establishment Survey Data

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 120,000 in March. In the prior 3 months, payroll employment had risen by an average of 246,000 per month.
Private-sector employment grew by 121,000 in March, including gains in manufacturing, food services and drinking places, and health care. Retail trade lost jobs over the month. Government employment was essentially unchanged. (See table B-1.)

Manufacturing employment rose by 37,000 in March, with gains in motor vehicles and parts (+12,000), machinery (+7,000), fabricated metals (+5,000), and paper manufacturing (+3,000). Factory employment has risen by 470,000 since a recent low point in January 2010.

Within leisure and hospitality, employment in food services and drinking places rose by 37,000 in March and has risen by 563,000 since a recent low point in February 2010.

In March, health care employment continued to grow (+26,000). Within the industry, offices of physicians and hospitals each added 8,000 jobs over the month.

Employment in financial activities was up by 15,000 in March, with most of the gain occurring in credit intermediation (+11,000).

Employment in professional and business services continued to trend up in March (+31,000). Employment in the industry has grown by 1.4 million
since a recent low point in September 2009. In March, services to buildings and dwellings added 23,000 jobs. Employment in temporary help services was about unchanged over the month after increasing by 55,000 in February.

Retail trade employment fell by 34,000 in March. A large job loss in general merchandise stores (-32,000) and small losses in other retail industries more than offset gains in health and personal care stores (+6,000) and in building material and garden supply stores (+5,000).

Employment in the other major private-sector industries, including mining, construction, wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, and information,
changed little in March.

The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls edged down by 0.1 hour to 34.5 hours in March. The manufacturing workweek fell by 0.3 hour to 40.7 hours, and factory overtime was unchanged at 3.4 hours.
The average workweek for production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged at 33.8 hours. (See tables B-2 and B-7.)

In March, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 5 cents, or 0.2 percent, to $23.39. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by 2.1 percent. In March, average hourly earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees rose by 3 cents, or 0.2 percent, to $19.68. (See tables B-3 and B-8.)

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for January was revised from +284,000 to +275,000, and the change for February was revised from +227,000
to +240,000.

______________
The Employment Situation for April is scheduled to be released on Friday, May 4, 2012, at 8:30 a.m. (EDT).